Soap on Safari with Sheabutter Cottage

Three of my shea butter soap bars recently went on (soap) safari to Ghana where they met the 54 dynamic women producers of the shea butter that's at the heart of their ingredients. Joking aside, Akua Wood, Founder at Sheabutter Cottage, very kindly took these soap bars with her when she visited the 54 dynamic women of Jilima Co-op, the shea butter co-operative in Ghana that she mobilised back in 2018.

Award-winning Sheabutter Cottage

Sheabutter Cottage is a multi-award-winning family-run business that works directly with farmers and producers in Ghana to offer quality ethical ingredients and products to people and businesses around the world. The company also has numerous beneficiaries in Ghana and supports them by providing for their welfare and educational needs.

Akua believes that:

Gathering workers together into co-operatives gives them some safeguards and empowers them to speak with a stronger voice to the buyer of the product. A better price and better terms should ensue.

Ghana is rich in plant resources, and shea butter is just one of them. A skincare staple used by Ghanian women for centuries, Jilima Co-op's shea butter is pure, unrefined, raw, and rich in nutrients - making it perfect for use in skincare products.

How to reap the benefits of shea

Obtained from the edible nut of the Karité tree, Jilima Co-op's shea butter is processed in a traditional way, without the use of chemicals. Shea butter is often processed using hexane, a solvent known to remove most of the natural healing properties of unrefined shea butter.

Shea butter is incredibly versatile and has been used in Ghana to combat the signs of ageing and the effects of sun damage on the skin. You can use shea butter in its raw state for its incredible benefits, including:

  • It can be used directly on the skin

  • It can be used as a daily hair moisturiser

  • It's safe to use by any member of the family

  • It's good for dandruff

  • It's safe to use during pregnancy

  • It can help soothe nappy rash

  • It can help reduce the appearance of scarring

 soap bars in a tree in Ghana

Shea butter soap

I love to use this fairtrade shea butter in my shea butter soap bars for its super moisturising qualities. The higher oil content in this unrefined, additive-free shea butter contains up to 17% unsaponifiables making it an incredible ingredient in soap. If you're not familiar with the soapmaking process, this means that 17% of this oil isn't converted into soap during the soapmaking process, and is instead 'free floating' in the soap bar itself. That's why my soap feels so beautifully moisturising on the skin. Try it for yourself! I'd really love to know what you think. Take a look at the range here.

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